When a toilet trained child suddenly wets the bed, it is just common for parents to worry. But before you panic, it’s important to remember that young and even older kids may wet the bed at some point. Generally, kids attain night time bladder control at different stages. But if your child is 5 years old or older, and he wets the bed at least once or twice in a week for a span of three months, he may already need your help in overcoming the problem.
Since most cases of bed-wetting do not require medical intervention, you can explore other approaches to help your child cope. Just bear in mind that these techniques or devices are designed to at least control the number of bed-wetting episodes per night. In short, these are only intended to help kids attain night time bladder control, and these are not quick fixes to a problem that requires time before it can be resolved. For as long as there is no medical cause, you may use these common approaches or even devices to address your child’s bed-wetting problem:
1. Bladder Training – The principle of this approach is to help your child postpone daytime urination. Each time your child tells you that he has to go, you have to ask him to hold it for a couple of minutes. Start by asking him to hold for 5 minutes and gradually increase the time for the succeeding exercises. Your child may need time before he can get used to this technique, but this exercise can help strengthen the muscle responsible for holding back urine.
2. Moisture Alarms – Reports show that these alarms are most useful in older kids who can wake themselves up upon hearing the alarm. The device is worn by a child and it would sound off once urine reaches the child’s undergarments. Parents need to initially help a child get used to the idea of getting out of bed, and going to the toilet when the alarm sounds. This approach is considered to be most effective as compared to giving rewards or even medications.
3. The Reward System –You can also come up with a reward system each time your child has a dry night. You can take him to places that he’d love to go, or you can just prepare small treats. Giving praise can also encourage your child to have a successful night.
4. Night-Lifting – The idea of this approach is to periodically awaken the child throughout the night so that he can empty his bladder. This is done so that a child is conditioned to wake up from his sleep when the need to go to the toilet arises.
5. Medications – Depending on the case, a doctor may recommend certain medications to temporarily stop bed-wetting. This approach is not commonly used because medicines generally have side effects. And according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, this should only be considered as a last resort in managing the issue of bed-wetting.
You can use a combination approach if you think that it will work best for your child. However, it’s most important to consider how your child will feel when these are imposed on him. Children should in no way feel that they are being punished due to bed-wetting. Stay supportive and persistent because it may take time before your child can achieve night time dryness. If you feel that you have exhausted all efforts and you are still not getting results, consult your health care provider.